Super Mario - part 2 of 1 2 3

by Gavin Stoker Published 01/04/2012


"Mario Acerboni have had a lot of nifty ideas [over their lifespan], such as the slip-in system which we all talk of as a standard page system, but that was designed and patented [by them] in 1982," notes Ian.

"We were looking for better quality at the time than the industry-standard plastic albums with a church window or horseshoe on the front; which were getting a bit naff.

"We knew there had to be a market for higher quality and Mario Acerboni, aside from offering leather covers, were one of the first album manufacturers to bind their albums like a book. I would still say that if you compare a Sim2000 or a GraphiStudio book with the binding skills of an Acerboni it's like Rolls Royce versus Ford. He's able to get the block of leaves really into the curve of the spine material. At one point we were selling more of their albums than they were in Italy."

Photographers wanting to take advantage of Acerboni's digital service simply upload their images to Parker Photographics website, who act as, in a sense, the go-between. "We help take away any stress for UK photographers in that respect," says Ian. Photographers simply upload their pages to the Parker website and can use their own software or provided PDS (Parker Design Software) software, which includes lots of templates and is available for Mac or PC.

Rather than the software being available as a download, because of the file size photographers filling in a request form on the website will be sent a software CD, Ian promises. "It's been around for a long time, it's tried and tested and there's a demo on our website."


Treasure trove of ideas

Centrally located, just outside of Birmingham, Parker Photographics is a business that can be reached easily from most corners of the UK, and invites photographers to drop in for a friendly tour of its showroom, products and facilities.

"There's also the opportunity for a walk around our warehouse where you might pick up some frame or album display bargains from discontinued lines," MD Ian White promises. "They're great for anyone wanting some more business driving samples to leave at their local wedding venues."

As for future plans, Ian divulges that Parker Photographics' stand at this year's Focus on Imaging will carry the slogan 'any cover with any interior'. Since Mario Acerboni has six or seven different page systems "we can literally say to a photographer that if they use us as a supplier on Acerboni then they are not held back at all," he adds. "With us you have the ability to offer a classic look or a contemporary feel according to the demands of your client, and without having to search around for another supplier. Mario Acerboni never like to stand still, and I think we influence a lot of people."

A case in point is that themed colours to go with themed weddings are proving popular, such as albums with black backgrounds and pink key-lines. "It looks stunning. It's so modern and so different and there's nobody else with that page system in the world. We have some unique stuff. Brides tend to have a colour scheme these days - some have gone for Barbie pink and they're the type of client who would bite your hand off if you offered them this page system. We've also got the safe bets: the plain black interiors and the plain white interiors. We even do faux leather covers going right up to hand painted ones. And in the current climate I think we're very competitive on price."

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